Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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Enlightened Absolutism
(3,562 words)

1. General

1.1. Terminology

In recent decades, many scholars have spoken of reform absolutism rather than enlightened absolutism as a variant of absolutism, a change led by a group of German-speaking historians [7] who have clearly shifted the emphasis of the term and in part also its chronology, while other have retained the older term [5].

The term aufgeklärter Absolutismus was coined in 1847 and subsequently employed by the economist Wilhelm Roscher [1]; [2] (on its history…

Cite this page
Demel, Walter, “Enlightened Absolutism”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 29 September 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_026289>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170626

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